Celebrate Black History month with Precious and the Boo Hag by Patricia McKissack. McKissack is a black author who gives us insights into the Gullah culture as well as finding a wonderful way to teach children to obey their parents and resist the devil.
We’ve all heard the different names people use, especially with children, to describe Satan. Most often we here him referred to as the devil, but it’s likely we’ve also heard and used the term “boogerman” or “boogeyman.” In Gullah culture he’s called Boo Hag and is portrayed in a more feminine way. Now before we find too much fault, think about common pictures and references to angels. They are usually feminine, though their names are Michael and Gabrielle, but I digress.
Precious is left at home alone because she has a stomachache. Her family goes to the fields to work. Precious’ mother says not to let “nobody and nothing” in the house. Before her brother leaves, he instructs her with a wink, of the wiles of the Boo Hag. “She tricky and she’s scarey”, so he admonishes Precious not to let her in. All during the day “visitors” attempt to get in. One is scary, the next is an old woman, and the last person looks like her friend Addie Louise, but she has a raspy voice. Finally, everyone is gone. Precious sees a copper coin on the front porch and she just has to have it. She tries various ways and finally picks it up. Just before she takes it in the house, she notices something very important…
Have fun and be sure to use your best Gullah voice when reading this picture book aloud. Precious and the Boo Hag is a not-too-scary story that will leave you and your children in stitches, all the while instilling some very important Biblical teachings. The most obvious one – “Resist the devil, and he will flee from you.”James 4:7 KJV.